The Australian government is considering introducing EV incentives that would also slowly phase out support for plugin hybrid models.
A bill that has been proposed and informally agreed upon, according to SBS News, if passed, would electrify the Australian government’s fleet of vehicles and would incentivize individuals and businesses to buy fully electric vehicles. While plugin hybrid (PHEV) vehicles would also be incentivized initially, they would no longer qualify for incentives after April 1st, 2025.
The deal that has been agreed upon between the ruling party and the green party would provide 4,700 Australian dollars (USD 3117.90) for individuals or 9,000 Australian dollars (USD 5970.45) for businesses to buy electric vehicles, PHEVs, or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles until April of 2025 when PHEVs would no longer qualify.
According to proponents of the bill, the incentive aims to motivate those who buy new vehicles to buy electric, eventually leading to a large number of used electric vehicles for those who cannot afford new ones.
While the proposed Australian EV incentives model looks much like the system currently in place in the United States, it has a unique focus on phasing out support for PHEV options. The American Inflation Reduction Act has often been criticized for doing the opposite, incentivizing PHEVs at the expense of foreign-built full-electric vehicles.
The problem that the Australian government may face is the lack of full-electric options available to consumers. Australia has been left behind by numerous manufacturers who have focused on supplying electric vehicles to more populous and less isolated areas/countries. Ford, a popular brand in the Australian market, has yet to sell an EV in Australia while selling both the Ford Mustang Mach-E and Ford F150 Lightning in the U.S. and even the Mustang Mach-E in Europe.
One question that critics of the proposed deal have posed is, could this lead to another Tesla-dominated electric vehicle market? As the U.S. has demonstrated, when consumers are left without options, and Tesla is willing and able to meet demand, they will flock to the Tesla options. However, with Tesla’s charging infrastructure in Australia still very much in its infancy compared to even the U.S., it may be a different story.
Overall, the proposed bill is excellent news for those looking to buy an EV in the land down under. And while the market’s reaction to the new legislation remains unclear, hopefully, it will lead to more EVs on the road overall.
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